This week The Artling has rounded up 10 French contemporary artists breaking the mould with their artworks. These French artists push the boundaries of contemporary art with works ranging from abstract and geometric to portraiture and nature.
Scroll down to learn more about how these French artists convey their creative processes and artistic influences through their artworks.
Frederic Belaubre graduated from the National School of Fine Arts in Paris (Beaux-Arts de Paris). To the Paris native, painting is an act of understanding and a search for fulfillment. His abstract oil painting 'The Old Sun' offers a burst of firey red and orange hues, which conveys his renewed attempts of the transfiguration of reality.
Born in Saint-Omer, Martin Singer graduated from École des Beaux-Arts in 1993 and went on to become a teacher in the School of Arts in Calais where he now resides. His artistic practice focuses on geometric and abstract artworks, and he often seeks inspiration from the seaside. His artworks often challenge the traditional boundaries of the canvas, and the geometric shapes and lines often spill out of the frame.
TOMAAS primarily works in the medium of photography known for creating surreal, emotionally compelling artworks often with a painterly quality. His portraits are dramatic, ethereal, and frequently retain a haunting essence. His artworks stand apart from the conventional photographic representations through his infusion of qualities of fine art painting while distorting and challenging society's traditional notions of beauty. An alchemist behind the lens, the Paris-based artist transforms ordinary objects into objects d’art that are timeless and artistically inspiring. Ranging from bursts of acid-bright colors that commnicate a palpable eroticism to otherworldly innocence, TOMAAS turns his subjects into living sculptures of experimental beauty.
Born in Roubaix, Ludovic Mercher is a self-taught painter who lives and works in Saint-Vincent-sur-Graon. After having experimented for ten years with several classical techniques, he developed the sought-after purity of his resolutely modern approach. Ludovic uses a deliberately stripped palette where red and black dominate, a striking characteristic seen in his paintings.
"On the canvas, a whole human geometry marks our living space, flows of information arise in architecture. As our civilization is constantly redefined by technology, I seek to find balance through the force of my imagination between matter and spirit."
Thomas Pourcelot Wonsungee was born in La Vieille-Loye of eastern France and is based has been based in Taiwan since 2016. He is a self-taught artist inspired by modern and contemporary art as well as the elements of primitive arts. Thomas' works have been gradually oriented towards "semi-automatism" and abstract expressionism.
"As for most of my works, the process is at the center of my reflection. The result, as in our lives and for any of our actions, isn’t so important to achieve because, anyway, it cannot be controlled."
Fabienne Verdier focuses on creating abstract artworks that retain calligraphic techniques. She graduated from her art school in Toulouse and was subsequently awarded a study grant to learn calligraphy in Chongqing. She stayed in China for ten years, winning research grants to continue studying, while absorbing the culture and travelling extensively throughout the country. 'Branches er Bourgeons "Etude du vegetal"' highlights Fabienne's experiences and calligraphic training, which had a strong influence on her artistic direction and gave her a unique perspective on the dynamics between Eastern and Western art.
Muriel Napoli lives and works in Marseille, a port city in southern France. Her works evoke a sense of connection between living beings and inanimate objects. Muriel is inspired by nature and its ability to change regardless of humanity's actions. She draws visual imagery from the creation of the oceans and the formation of fire and magma. She utilises the scientific origins of these elements, and focuses on conveying the organic essence in her paintings.
Stephane Villafane was trained as an architect, which influenced his focus of infusing space and its relationship with time in his paintings. He is fascinated with the idea of how one can formulate different types of spaces - empty, constructed, natural, and meditative. To discover new types of spaces, Stephane believes that it is vital to rid his paintings of a narrative or subject. His process involves the observation of things from a distance, and works across different media including photos, sketches, and models before he conceptualises his paintings.
Both natural and sophisticated, Seb Janiak's photography is constantly on the verge of emotion. The Paris-based artist achieves this through molecular microphotography, bringing forth the true fullness of what the invisible. In 'Morphogenetic Field - AB Negative Blood', Seb examines the visible manifestation of the essence of various substances. To the artist, every entity in the universe contains its own signature; a data field that holds every physical characteristic, environmental influence, memory, and experience known to it - a morphogenetic field.
"My work simply uses the manifestation of invisible forces - photography is incapable of seeing what is invisible in the way that physicists can"
Born and raised in Versailles, Claire Denarie-Soffietti moved to South Africa after completing her studies in Paris. Her life in South Africa has strongly influenced her paintings through the patterns, colours, and emotive representations. This unique visual language comes through in 'Pamushana (A Place Under the Sun)'. Claire's works transitioned as she developed her craft, expanding landscapes and enhancing her exploration of colour and defined detailed patterns. Her works are also influenced by Fauvism, an art movement characterised by brilliant colours and spontaneous brushwork.
We hope you enjoyed learning about these French artists, and how they are breaking the mold with their creative process and cultural experiences.
Here on The Artling, we have a wide selection of artists from around the world with new artworks added to the site daily, click here to find out more!
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